TSA Extends The Mask Mandate For Travelers For One More Month
As Covid-19 related mandates are being lifted around the country, including in big cities like New York City and Los Angeles, airlines and airports have decided to keep mask rules in place for at least another month.
In the fourth extension since January 2021, the new reevaluation date is set for April 18. The extra month is intended to protect airport and airplane employees and passengers as crowds surge as students travel for spring break.
“(Through April 18), CDC will work with government agencies to help inform a revised policy framework for when, and under what circumstances, masks should be required in the public transportation corridor,” said a Thursday statement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “This revised framework will be based on the Covid-19 community levels, risk of new variants, national data, and the latest science. We will communicate any updates publicly if and/or when they change.”
The extended requirement comes even after the CDC reported last month that most Americans should be safe to go maskless indoors. The new date pushes the airport and airline mask requirement to nearly two years.
Although flight attendants’ jobs require them to interact with countless passengers daily, many have voiced that they are tired of having to remind passengers to wear their masks. They have to deal with complaints and unruly fliers daily. Other flight attendants have suggested removing the mandatory piece and allowing those who want to wear a mask to wear one.
However, there is still good news for those who are looking forward to returning to mask-free travel.
TSA Administrator David Pekoske said in a statement that “we are seeing a light at the end of the tunnel as demonstrated by the rapid recovery of the travel industry.”